The term “man of God”, (used predominantly in Africa) is one of great respect but carries with it an incredible responsibility. This endearing term has the potential to lead the minister of the gospel into the pressure cooker of performance. The man of God, in the pursuit of the miraculous, can be pressured to fabricate the counterfeit if the genuine presence of God does not show up in a Sunday gathering.
Following RTC’s seminar “Another Gospel”, shared at the PAOGZ (Zambia) General Conference last week, the chief bishop responded with a challenge regarding the genuine vs. the counterfeit. Upon returning to my accommodation, I began to ponder on those two terms. Here is what came to my mind: counterfeit is a shortcut – genuine is a process. The one who produces counterfeit currency does so in an effort to shortcut the process of making money honestly through education and hard work. The same holds true in the spiritual realm. Most of us want to experience the miraculous power of God without going through the process of time spent in the Word of God and prayer.
When we settle for the counterfeit, we are doing what Paul suggested to the church in Corinth, “acting like mere men” (1 Corinthians 3:3). There is a constant tension between Divine power and human performance. In John 10, the Jews were trying to stone Jesus. They were questioning his authority as the Son of God, to the point that they accused Him of being demon possessed and raving mad. Jesus said to them: “I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?” The Jews responded: “We are not stoning you for any of these, but for the blasphemy, because you a mere man claim to be God.” Ironic isn’t it, in Jesus day, the Jews turned “the Son of God” into a mere man, today, in the church; we tend to turn mere men into “the man of God”.
The apostle Paul sets the record straight and provides the answer to this tension between Divine power and human performance. He says in 2 Corinthians 3:4 – 5 “Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God.”
In 2 Peter 1:3, Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ says: “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”
Pictured in my blog today is the men and women of God at the PAOGZ General Conference who came to the altar in response to this word. I challenged them, as I do you today, to put God back on center stage in our lives.
Don’t settle for the counterfeit, when you can have the real deal!!!
Until next Monday…
Taking risks for Kingdom impact!